The U.S. Department of Transportation recently announced the expiration on Nov. 10 of a general waiver to Buy America requirements imposed by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. With this expiration, the IIJA’s expanded Buy America requirements are now in effect for most federally funded infrastructure projects. The DOT proposed two narrower waivers that will exempt a limited number of projects from these requirements.

The first proposed waiver would waive these requirements for contracts entered into prior to the general waiver’s expiration, specifically:

  • Any contract entered into before Nov. 10, 2022
  • Any contract entered into before Mar. 10, 2023, if the contract results from a solicitation published prior to May 14, 2022

The second proposed waiver would waive these requirements for small grants, de minimis costs and minor components.

ABC submitted comments in support of the waivers, stating that, while ABC supports strategies to expand domestic jobs and manufacturing to avoid global supply chain disruptions and capture economic benefits within America, Buy America requirements must be balanced with safeguards against increased costs and delays of infrastructure projects funded by taxpayers.